Petri Levälahti has shared some tips and tricks on how to take phenomenal in-game photos in The Last Of Us Part 2. Since this game is the best one that I’ve ever played in my life, I’m really interested to see how I can make it even better with these tips, and I thought you’d all appreciate them too.
The Last of Us 2 photo mode tips & tricks thread:
Let's start with a simple portrait. This particular room/spot has a nice, soft, bloomy light. Finding good lights & shadows make about 95% of your shot. This thread can hopefully help you with the remaining 5%.
— Petri Levälahti (@Berduu) July 5, 2020
A lot of these tips need to be seen with the videos or images that go with them to make sense, but I’m going to try to describe some of them as best I can for you here. The first thing of note is lighting. There are some areas in the game that just have great lighting, and that will make any screenshot you take far better than one in an area without lighting. A good example is Ellie and Dina’s farmhouse bedroom at night.
Next, depth of field. I don’t totally understand this, but what it seems to come down to is getting an image sharp enough that you’re pleased with it, and if it’s a portrait, get some eye contact in there. Motion blue can also be your friend in certain shots, but generally if it affects the current character then it’ll just ruin whatever you’re working with. There’s actually a toggle for slow motion in the game’s accessibility options, which makes it easier for nabbing great screenshots.
The next important point is the in-game exhaustion, sweat, and idle animations. Some of the most interesting poses will occur naturally if you just let characters do nothing for a while. However, they may not look as good as you want them to if they haven’t been running around recently, so exhaust them and get that sheen of sweat just right. Sometimes the right lighting can be achieved with a character if you use your flashlight, you never know what will happen.
Keep an eye on what the characters look like while you’re looking around. Spinning Ellie around backwards could lead to an incredible shot, as can simply making her look up towards the ceiling. Naughty Dog animated each character incredibly well, and it pays off for the game’s photo mode.
Finally, there’s good lighting, and there’s interesting lighting. Sometimes light is just cast in such a way that it looks completely unique, and needs to be captured. Don’t be afraid of playing with light in this way, and keep an open mind as to when your next photo might be taken.